Turkish court sentences TV preacher to 1,000 years in jail for fraud and sexual abuse

A Turkish Criminal Court has sentenced Islamic television preacher and writer Adnan Oktar to 1,075-year prison term for a range of crimes, including forming and leading a criminal gang, fraud and sexual abuse. Anadolu Agency reports.

Oktar is accused of founding and leading a criminal organization, political or military espionage, sexual abuse of minors, deprivation of liberty of person, torture, death threats, fraud and other crimes.

Oktar, known under pen-name Harun Yahya, is the author of over 300 books on political, religious and popular science topics, translated into 73 languages. According to Reuters, he also owned TV channel A9 on which he hosted talk shows on Islamic values. On occasion he was broadcast dancing with young women and singing with young men.

The 64-year-old pseudo-preacher was arrested in 2018 along with collaborators, following allegations of sexual abuse and kidnapping of minors.

Currently, 236 accused are involved in the case. 78 of them were detained for participation in organized crime under Oktar’s lead.

Oktar and 13 other high-ranking members of his group were in total sentenced to 9,803 years and six months in jail.

In turn, the leader of the pseudo-Islamic sect denied the charges against him and demanded his release.

Adnan Oktar began operations in the late 1970s. However, in the 1980s, he faced a number of trials on charges of creating a criminal gang, but was acquitted.